What are Large Language Models (LLMs)? | Concepts, Examples & Use Cases

Yogesh Pant
Oct 17, 2023

In an era driven by artificial intelligence, technologies like Large Language Models (LLMs) are revolutionizing the ways how we used to interact with information. These AI systems are advanced enough to generate human-like texts and code just like professionals. 

While AI is no longer a new buzzword, many are still far from understanding the concepts of LLMs. So, what are LLMs and how do they work in generative AI? Let’s find out in this blog!

Large Language Models (LLMs) are powerful AI systems based on deep learning algorithms designed to understand natural language and process the outcome. These AI-powered systems are trained on huge text data and can accurately analyze and generate human-like results. 

If you’re looking to learn more about Large Language Models (LLMs), this blog will particularly serve as a valuable resource for you to enhance your knowledge about this power-packed AI system, and its concepts, alongside examples and use cases. 

What are Large Language Models (LLMs)? Definition

A Large Language Model (LLM) is a type of AI-backed machine learning model that uses deep learning algorithms to analyze, understand, and process natural language. These models are trained on huge amounts of text data to learn the structure and meaning of the language. 

LLMs are capable of performing various kinds of language tasks, such as language translation, chatbot interaction, sentiment analysis, and more. They can handle complex textual data, recognize entities and their relations, and create new human-like text that is fluent and grammatically correct. 

On the other hand, the concept of a language model is to assign probabilities to sequences of words, based on the study of text corpora. A language model can have different levels of complexity, from simple n-gram models to more advanced neural network models. 

However, the term “large language model” usually means models that use deep learning models and have a large number of parameters, which can vary from millions to billions. These models can learn complex patterns in language and generate text that is often similar to that written by humans.

How Do LLMs Work in Generative AI?

As mentioned earlier, Large Language Models (LLMs) can understand, analyze, and process results in human-like language. They do this by analyzing datasets and learning from the patterns, grammar, and even cultural references in the data to generate text in a natural way. 

LLMs have many layers and millions (or even billions) of parameters that allow them to learn from huge amounts of data and understand the complex connections between words to predict the next word in a sentence. 

The systems use self-supervised learning to train on this data repeatedly until they achieve a high level of accuracy and can independently produce text prompts, translate languages, and even write content like a human. 

The performance of a language model is mainly determined by the quality of the data it was trained on. The larger and more varied the data used during training, the more efficient and accurate the model will be. 

Modern LLMs today rely on very large datasets gathered from the web. The advancements in hardware capabilities, combined with enhanced training techniques and more data accessibility, have made language models more potent than ever before.

Architecture of Large Language Models (LLMs)

Large Language Models (LLMs) have various essential elements that allow them to effectively handle and process natural language data. 

Here are some important components of LLMs:


Tokenization is the process of breaking down a text sequence into individual words, subwords, or tokens that can be easily understood by the model. 

In LLMs, tokenization is typically done using subword methods like WordPiece or BPE, which divide the text into smaller segments that cover both common and uncommon words. 

This technique helps to reduce the model’s vocabulary size while preserving its ability to express any text sequence.


Embedding is a vector representation of tokens or words that are continuous and reflect their semantic meanings in a high-dimensional space. They enable the model to transform discrete tokens into a format that the neural network can handle. 

In LLMs, embeddings are acquired during the training process, and the resulting vector representations can reveal intricate relationships between words, such as synonyms or analogies.


In LLMs, especially the transformers that use self-attention, the model can assign different values to the words or phrases in a context based on their importance. This way, the model can pay more attention to the most significant information and disregard the less relevant ones. 

This focus on certain parts of the input is essential for understanding the complex relationships and subtleties of natural language.


LLMs are trained on a large dataset, typically without supervision or with self-supervision, before they are adapted for a particular task. The process is called pretraining. During pre-training, the model acquires general language skills, such as grammar, word associations, and semantics. 

This leads to a pre-trained model that can be fine-tuned with a smaller, task-specific dataset, saving a lot of time and labeled data and achieving high performance on various NLP tasks.

Transfer Learning

Transfer learning is the method of using the information learned during pre-training and adapting it to a new, similar task. For LLMs, transfer learning means adjusting a pre-trained model on a smaller, task-specific dataset to get high results on that task. 

The advantage of transfer learning is that it lets the model use the huge amount of general language knowledge learned during pretraining, lowering the need for big labeled datasets and long training for each new task.

What Are Different Types of Large Language Models (LLMs)?

The specific requirements and challenges in natural language processing (NLP) have led to the classification of LLMs based on different criterias. Let’s look at some of the notable ones. 

Autoregressive Language Models

Autoregressive models predict the next word based on the previous words in a sequence. An example of this type of model is GPT-3. Autoregressive models learn to optimize the probability of producing the right next word, depending on the context. They are very good at making text that is consistent and relevant to the topic, but they can also be slow and may produce responses that are redundant or off-topic.

  • Example: GPT-3

Transformer-based Models

Large language models use a type of deep learning structure called transformers. The transformer model, which was first proposed by Vaswani and his colleagues in 2017, is an essential part of many LLMs. This transformer structure enables the model to handle and create text efficiently, taking into account distant relationships and situational information.

  • Example: RoBERTa by Facebook AI

Encoder-decoder Models

A popular approach for tasks like machine translation, summarization, and question-answering is to use encoder-decoder models. These models have two main parts: an encoder that takes the input sequence and processes it, and a decoder that produces the output sequence. 

The encoder creates a fixed-length representation of the input information, which the decoder uses to create the output sequence. The ‘Transformer’ is a transformer-based model that follows this encoder-decoder structure.

  • Example: MarianMT 

Pre-trained and Fine-tuned Models

A common technique for tasks like sentiment analysis or named entity recognition is to use large language models that have been pre-trained on huge amounts of data. This way, the models can learn the general patterns and meanings of language. 

These pre-trained models can be further trained on specific tasks or domains using smaller datasets that are relevant to the task. This fine-tuning process makes the model more adept at a certain task. This technique is more efficient and faster than training a large model from scratch for each task.

  • Example: ELECTRA 

Multilingual Models

Multilingual models are trained to understand and analyze multiple global languages, and they can handle and produce text in various languages. Tasks like finding information across languages, translating text, or creating a multilingual LLM chatbot can benefit from these models. Multilingual models can use common representations across languages to share knowledge from one language to another.

  • Example: XLM developed by Facebook AI Research

Hybrid models

A hybrid model is a type of model that uses different types of architectures to enhance its performance. For instance, some models may use both transformers and recurrent neural networks (RNNs). 

RNNs are a kind of neural network that is good at processing data that have a sequence. They can work together with LLMs to handle sequential relationships as well as the self-attention features of transformers.

  • Example: UniLM 

What Are Some Popular Examples of Large Language Models (LLMs)?

There are several popular Large Language Models (LLMs) examples available today. Each of these AI-powered systems has unique features and real-life use cases. 

Here are some notable examples of LLMs: 

  • GPT-3, 3.5 and 4

GPT-4, its predecessors GPT-3.5, and GPT-3 models are based on large language models to understand, analyze, and process data. The latest GPT-4 version is more creative, visually comprehensive, and contextual than its previous version. The AI-powered system enables users to work on multiple projects, including writing, music, coding, screenplays, scripts, etc. 

Additionally, the model can even analyze images as input to generate results. Additionally, its multilingual capabilities allow it to answer queries in about 26 languages. Its accuracy for outcomes in the English language is about 85.5%. 

  • BERT (Bidirectional Encoder Representations from Transformers)

Bidirectional pre-training for LLMs is a concept that was introduced by Google's BERT. The model can fill in the blanks in a sentence by looking at both the left and right context, unlike previous models that only used autoregressive training. 

This bidirectional method allows BERT to understand language better and handle complex dependencies. BERT has been very successful in tasks like answering questions, analyzing sentiments, recognizing names, and comprehending language. It has also been adapted for specific domains in fields such as healthcare and finance.

  • T5 (Text-to-Text Transfer Transformer)

Google's T5 is a flexible LLM AI model that uses a text-to-text approach for training. It can perform many different language tasks by changing the input and output formats to text-to-text. T5 has reached the best performance in machine translation, text classification, text summarization, and document generation. It can handle various tasks with a single framework, making it very adaptable and effective for different language-related applications.

  • XLNet 

A novel model called XLNet, created by experts from Google and Carnegie Mellon University, overcomes some of the drawbacks of autoregressive models like GPT-3. It uses a training method based on permuting the word order, which enables the model to learn from all possible word sequences during pre-training. 

This allows XLNet to model bidirectional relationships without requiring autoregressive generation at inference time. XLNet has shown remarkable results in tasks such as Q&A, sentiment analysis, and natural language inference.

  • Turing-NLG

Microsoft's Turing-NLG is a powerful LLM AI model that specializes in generating conversational replies. It has learned from a massive collection of dialogues to enhance its conversational skills. Turing-NLG excels in chatbot applications, offering engaging and relevant responses in conversational scenarios.

Real-world Use Cases of Large Language Models (LLMs)

Generally, LLMs can analyze, summarize, process, edit, re-write, transcribe, or fetch insights from datasets or input text. As the adoption of LLMs increases day by day, there are some real-world use cases of large language models that seem promising. 

Translation with Language Models

A common use case for LLMs is to translate written texts into different languages. A user can type text into a chatbot and request a translation into another language, and the model will instantly start translating the text.

Some research has indicated that LLMs like GPT-4 are comparable to commercial translation products, such as Google Translate. However, researchers also point out that GPT-4 is more effective for translating European languages, but not as precise at translating “low-resource” or “distant” languages.

Content Creation

Content creation is one of the most popular applications for Large Language Models (LLMs). These models allow users to produce various types of written content from blogs to short stories, scripts, summaries, questionnaires, surveys, and social media posts. The quality of these outputs relies on the details given in the initial prompt.

If LLMs are not used to create content directly, they can also be used to assist with ideation. As per the new study, 33% of marketers use AI to generate ideas for marketing content. The main benefit here is that AI can accelerate the content creation process.


One of the ways that users can explore this generative model is by using it as a search tool. Users can type in questions in natural language and get immediate answers with information and facts on various topics. 

However, not everything that solutions like Bard or ChatGPT generate is reliable. Language models can sometimes make up facts and figures that are not true. 

Therefore, users should verify any factual information that they get from LLMs so they can avoid falling for false information.

Virtual Assistants and Customer Support

Generative AI can also be useful for enhancing customer support as virtual assistants. A study showed that at one company with 5,000 customer service agents, the use of generative AI improved issue resolution by 14% an hour and cut down the time needed to handle an issue by 9%.

AI virtual assistants enable customers to ask questions about services and products, get refunds, and file complaints instantly. For end users, it removes the need to wait for a human support agent, and for employees, it simplifies repetitive support tasks.

Code Development

Language models that use generative AI can create natural language as well as code in various advanced programming languages such as JavaScript, Python, PHP, Java, and C#. These models enable users who are not experts in coding to create basic code. 

However, they have limitations when it comes to more advanced projects that require more skill and scale. Therefore, developers should verify the code for any errors or vulnerabilities before deploying it. 

They can also leverage these models to assist them in fixing existing code or creating documentation automatically instead of doing it manually.


Generative AI can also transcribe audio or video files into written text with high precision, making LLMs popular and usable. Sonix is an example of a provider that uses generative AI to produce and summarize transcripts from audio and video files.

This means that human users can avoid transcribing audio manually, which can save a lot of time and remove the need to hire a transcriptionist.

One of the benefits that LLMs have over conventional transcription software is that they can use natural language processing (NLP) to understand the context and meaning of statements given via audio.

Market Research

Market research is vital for any business that wants to understand its customers, competitors, products, services, and markets better. Generative AI can assist in this process by analyzing large amounts of data and producing concise and relevant summaries and inferences. 

Language models can take the user’s text input or dataset and generate a written report that highlights the key trends and insights into the customer segments, the market opportunities and challenges,  the unique value proposition, and other useful information that can help the business achieve long-term growth.

Keyword Research

Keyword research is essential for any business that wants to optimize its website and blog content for search engines. AI assistants can help with this task by suggesting the best keywords and related terms for a given topic. 

For instance, you could ask for some catchy and SEO-optimized titles for your blog posts. To get the best results, it’s a good idea to use language models like ChatGPT to generate potential keywords and then verify them with a tool from a different provider like Ahrefs or Wordstream to make sure they have enough traffic.

Sentiment Analysis

LLMs can be used to perform qualitative analysis on text, by extracting the sentiment of the text to understand the writer’s perspective on a certain subject. This allows an organization to measure customer feedback from various sources such as social media posts, and customer ratings to help an organization find insights that can help them to improve their brand management.

Sales Automation

One of the uses of generative AI tools such as ChatGPT is to streamline some parts of the sales process from finding leads to engaging, customizing, qualifying, to ranking leads, and predicting outcomes. For example, an LLM can examine a dataset and find potential leads, while learning about their interests and generating tailored suggestions.

What are Some Potential Challenges of Large Language Models?

Large language models (LLMs) are undoubtedly powerful and promising technologies that will power many AI applications in the future. However, they also have some limitations and challenges. 

  • The cost and time required to train is one of the major challenges It takes millions of dollars to build a large enough computing infrastructure that can handle the massive amount of data and computation needed for training an LLM. 
  • It also takes months of training and human intervention to fine-tune the model and improve its performance. 
  • Another challenge is the data availability and legality. An LLM needs a huge amount of text data to learn from, but obtaining such data can be difficult and risky. For example, ChatGPT has been accused of being trained on data that was scraped illegally from the web, which could pose legal and ethical issues for building commercial applications. 
  • Additionally, there has been an environmental impact of an LLM. It has been reported that training a single AI model from scratch can produce as much carbon emissions as five cars in their entire lifetime. This is a serious concern in the context of global warming and climate change. We cannot ignore the ecological footprint of an LLM.

The Future of Large Language Models (LLMs)

As the efficiency of LLMs is continuously increasing, the future of such powerful AI systems seems promising. Here are some key predictions for Large Language Models for the future: 

Multilingual and Cross-Lingual Understanding 

LLMs will keep enhancing their capabilities in understanding and producing text in various languages. They may learn to grasp subtleties, colloquialisms, and cultural references, leading to more precise and respectful translations. 

Domain-Specific Knowledge

LLMs will be customized and trained in different fields such as medicine, law, finance, or scientific research and display expert-level information. This could facilitate more specialized and accurate support in these areas. 

Virtual Assistants and Chatbots

LLMs are becoming more advanced. They may comprehend and answer complex questions, improving user experiences in customer service, information retrieval, and personal assistance. 

Creative Content Production

LLMs could progress to produce more creative and original content, such as writing captivating stories, composing music, or creating artwork. They can understand user preferences and produce personalized creative outputs.

Real-Time Language Translation

LLMs may improve to provide real-time translation capabilities, enabling smooth communication between people speaking different languages in the form of text or audio. This could greatly impact international cooperation, travel, and global communication.


Many AI-influenced industries have witnessed a significant shift with the emergence of large language models (LLMs), which have greatly improved the computer's ability to comprehend and generate human-like outcomes.

Today, LLM machine learning models can perform various tasks such as generating text, translating between languages, summarizing content, classifying information, analyzing sentiment, and facilitating conversational AI. These models have opened up new horizons for human-machine interaction. 

We anticipate further breakthroughs in natural language understanding and applications in different fields as these models are continuously improved by research and development.


What is an AI Model?

An AI model is a program or algorithm that uses data to learn patterns and make predictions or decisions.

What are LLMs in AI?

LLMs are large language models that can recognize and generate text using neural networks and self-supervised learning.

What can LLMs be Used for? 

LLMs can be used for various natural language processing tasks, such as text generation, machine translation, summarization, classification, sentiment analysis, and conversational AI.

What does LLM Stand for?

LLM stands for Large Language Model, meaning they can analyze, understand, and generate human-like texts based on initial prompts. 

What are LLMs Examples? 

Some examples of LLMs are Chat GPT, BERT, LaMDA, PaLM, BLOOM, XLM-RoBERTa, NeMO, XLNet, Cohere, and GLM-130B.

Are LLMs a Type of Machine Learning? 

Yes, LLMs are a type of machine learning, specifically a type of neural network called a transformer model.

Is LLM Good for the Future? 

LLM technology is good for the future as it can enable more natural and efficient human-machine interaction and unlock new possibilities for creativity and innovation in various domains.

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